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Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies 2.1

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Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies 2.1
Chapter II
Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
Rajasthan Rajya Vidyut Utpadan Nigam Limited
[
2.1
Performance Audit on Fuel Management
Executive summary
The Rajasthan Rajya Vidyut Utpadan Nigam
Limited (RRVUNL) operates two coal based
thermal power stations at Kota (1,045 MW) and
Suratgarh (1,250 MW) and two gas based
thermal power stations at Ramgarh (110.5
MW) and Dholpur (330 MW). Fuel comprising
of coal and gas were major component for
generation
of
electricity.
Fuel
cost
(Rs. 14,336.59 crore) constituted 88.69 per cent
of total generation cost (Rs. 16,165.25 crore)
during 2004-05 to 2008-09 in respect of Kota,
Suratgarh and Ramgarh power stations. The
performance audit was conducted to ascertain
fuel efficiency in power generation, economy in
procurement and transportation, effectiveness
of quality assurance and energy audit, actual
consumption
against
norms,
inventory
management and financial management with
reference to fuel.
Procurement of fuel
Coal is allotted by Standing Linkage Committee
(SLC) from different collieries. As against
required quantity of 647.53 lakh MT, SLC
allotted 691.50 lakh MT but the actual receipt
thereagainst was only 592.68 lakh MT during
2004-09. Since RRVUNL had projected the
requirement above the Central Electricity
Authority targets for generation, there was no
shortfall. The cost of coal was Rs. 7,584.73
crore. There was decrease in linkages from
superior coal fields. The beneficiation of coal
was not 100 per cent resulting in savings of
Rs. 24.79 crore not achieved.
The tie-up with GAIL for supply of gas was not
for adequate quantity. This resulted in loss of
generation of 1,426.64 MUs as the Plant Load
Factor ranged between 36 and 45 as against 70
per cent fixed by Rajasthan Electricity
Regulatory Commission (RERC).
Transportation of fuel
The coal is transported through Railway
wagons. Out of total cost of Rs. 13,847.14 crore
on coal fuel, transportation accounted for
Rs. 6,262.41 crore (over 45 per cent). No norm
for transit loss was fixed. Taking the norm of
1.5 per cent fixed for contractor of beneficiated
coal, the excess transit loss worked out to
Rs. 49.95 crore. The RRVUNL did not follow
the proper quality assurance procedures. The
claims for Rs. 94.12 crore for under loading
and over loading were not preferred/adjusted.
Consumption of fuel
The actual consumption of coal and gas was
higher than the norms fixed by RERC.
The excess consumption of coal due to higher
Station Heat Rate than the norms was valued at
Rs. 245.10 crore.
Inventory management
Safe and critical level of coal stock was
prescribed at 15 days and 7 days respectively.
On several occasions the coal level remained
critical during 2006-07 to 2008-09.
Financial management
The financial management was deficient as
instances of delay in realisation of claims,
payment for coal supplies etc. were noticed.
Energy audit
Energy audit was not undertaken for reducing
the heat losses.
Conclusion and Recommendations
Fuel management system of RRVUNL did not
meet the expectation of being operated
economically and efficiently. System of
procurement and transportation of fuel was
deficient and the actual consumption of coal
and gas was higher. There was considerable
scope for improvement in performance of fuel
management system to enhance overall
operational performance. The review contains
eight recommendations which includes close
monitoring of transit losses and analysis of
reasons for excess consumption of coal for taking
remedial measures.
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
Introduction
2.1.1 The Government policy on power generation is intended to meet the
galloping demand in the power deficit State by providing quality power to all,
at reasonable rates. The conventional process of generation of the power
consumes a large volume of fuel, both coal and gas, which are scarce, non
renewable and fast depleting resources. Coal is concentrated in a particular
zone of the country and the gas is available in the remote areas. The natural
resources are state owned with complex allocation process and their
transportation is costly affair for the remotely located thermal stations. Fuel
management is important in financial terms also as it constitutes major
component of the cost of the power generated. Hence minimization of the
transit losses and consumption as per the norms are the key drivers for
effective fuel management.
The Rajasthan Rajya Vidyut Utpadan Nigam Limited (RRVUNL) operates
two coal based thermal power stations (TPSs) - Kota Super Thermal Power
Station (KSTPS) at Kota (1,045 MW) and Suratgarh Super Thermal Power
Station (SSTPS) at Suratgarh (1,250 MW) for which coal is procured from
South Eastern Coalfields Limited (SECL) and Northern Coalfields Limited
(NCL). The RRVUNL also operates two gas based power stations viz;
Ramgarh Gas Thermal Power Station (RGTPS) at Ramgarh (110.5 MW) and
Dholpur Combined Cycle Power Project (DCCPP) at Dholpur (330 MW) for
which gas is procured from GAIL (India) Limited and Oil and Natural Gas
Corporation (ONGC) Limited respectively. One lignite based power station
viz; Giral Lignite Thermal Power Station (GLTPS) at Giral (125 MW) was
installed (February 2007). Power generation also involves use of light diesel
oil (LDO), high speed diesel oil (HSD) and furnace oil (FO) as secondary
fuels to light up the boiler and impart stability to flame. These are procured
from oil companies.
During 2004-09, KSTPS, SSTPS and RGTPS incurred an expenditure of
Rs. 14,336.59 crore (Coal Rs. 13,846.74 crore, Gas Rs. 276.74 crore and oil
Rs. 213.11 crore) towards fuel cost representing 88.69 per cent of total
generation cost (Rs. 16,165.25 crore) during the same period.
Scope of Audit
2.1.2 A Performance audit was conducted during February to April, 2009
covering the RRVUNL activities relating to assessment of requirement,
procurement, transportation, quality assurance and financial management
including claim management of fuel for period from 2004-05 to 2008-09* at
KSTPS, SSTPS and RGTPS. The performance of DCCPP and GLTPS was not
covered in the present performance audit as DCCPP commenced commercial
*
Figures for the year 2008-09 are as provided by the Management based on
provisional unaudited accounts.
24
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
operation between March and December 2007, whereas the commercial
operation at GLTPS was yet to be commenced. The audit findings are based
on test check of records at RRVUNL Headquarter at Jaipur and at KSTPS,
SSTPS and RGTPS.
Audit objectives
2.1.3 The performance audit of fuel management was carried out to assess
whether:
•
the procurement and transportation of fuel was done economically and
efficiently;
•
the quality and quantity of fuel received was inspected as per the laid
down procedure and deviations were timely and adequately claimed
from the suppliers;
•
the actual consumption of coal, gas and oil was in line with the norms
fixed by Rajasthan Electricity Regulatory Commission (RERC);
•
an effective and efficient financial management system exists;
•
an effective and efficient inventory management mechanism exists;
and
•
the energy audit was undertaken and recommendations for reducing
the heat losses implemented.
Audit criteria
2.1.4 The performance audit with regard to fuel management by the
RRVUNL was assessed against the:
•
targeted generation fixed by Central Electricity Authority (CEA) and
allocation of coal quantities by the Standing Linkage Committee (SLC)
of Government of India, and directions of the Government for import
of coal;
•
agreements with coal, gas and oil supplier companies, transport agency
as well as with liaison agents;
•
norms of consumption of coal, gas and oil fixed by CEA/RERC; and
•
norms of station heat rate (SHR) fixed by RERC.
25
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
Audit Methodology
2.1.5 Audit adopted a mix of the following methodologies for achieving the
audit objectives keeping in view the audit criteria:
•
examination of agenda and minutes of the Board of Directors (Board)
meeting for awarding of work, procurement of fuel and appraisal of the
performance of the plants;
•
scrutiny and analysis of fuel related guidelines of CEA/RERC and
Ministry of Environment and Forest (MOEF);
•
scrutiny of records relating to SLC, procurement, receipt and
consumption of fuel, plant outages reports, fuel cost reports, coal and
fuel efficiency reports;
•
scrutiny and analysis of agreements with coal suppliers, oil/gas
companies, liaison agents and Railways and performance thereof; and
•
issue of audit queries and interaction with the Management.
Audit Findings
2.1.6 Audit findings were reported to the RRVUNL and the Government in
June 2009 and were discussed (14 September 2009) in the Exit Conference
which was attended by the Chairman and Managing Director along with the
Chief Engineers of KSTPS and SSTPS in addition to other officers of auditee
unit. The views expressed by them have been considered while finalizing the
performance review.
The performance of KSTPS, SSTPS and RGTPS was deficient in the areas of
materialization of linkage, fuel consumption, transportation of fuel, quality
assurance and financial management.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that they
were heavily dependent on the coal companies and Railways, who were
operating in monopoly environment, for procurement of their fuel requirement
and on many occasions were unable to exercise continued pursuance to their
advantage in the matter of materialization of linkage, coal quality etc.
Fuel Management
2.1.7 Fuel cost is the major component of the total cost of the power
generation. Optimization of the fuel cost by effective planning, procurement
and consumption is, therefore, necessary to generate electricity at economical
rates. The plant-wise fuel cost and total generation cost for the period of
26
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
review is given below:
(Rs. in crore)
Particulars
Fuel cost
Total generation cost
Percentage of fuel cost to
generation cost
KSTPS
5716.83
6277.22
91.07
SSTPS
8247.16
9422.73
87.52
RGTPS
372.60
465.30
80.08
TOTAL
14336.59
16165.25
88.69
Fuel cost ranged from 80.08 to 91.07 per cent of total generation cost in
respect of different plants during the review period.
The material cost i.e. the fuel cost per unit of KWH at KSTPS, SSTPS and
RGTPS is given below:
(in paisa)
Name of Station 2004-05
2005-06
2006-07
2007-08
2008-09
SSTPS
161
169
177
185
225
KSTPS
143
143
143
153
185
RGTPS
165
188
260
268
NA
It can be seen that fuel cost for SSTPS had increased by 64 paisa per unit,
while fuel cost for KSTPS increased by 42 paisa per unit during the review
period indicating higher fuel cost increase in the case of SSTPS. While
KSTPS units/plants were old but located near to the supply point of fuel,
SSTPS plants were new and equipped with latest technology of higher
generating capacity (MW) but located far away from the supply point of fuel
as compared to the KSTPS. The increase in per unit fuel cost was attributable
to failure in materialization of linkage of fuel and loss of generation,
inadequate use of washed coal, increased composition of low grade coal,
higher incidence of transit losses, failure to improve the productivity in
consumption of coal, ineffective contract and financial management, lack of
energy audit etc., apart from general rise in price of fuel and freight as
discussed in detail in paragraphs 2.1.9 to 2.1.13, 2.1.15 to 2.1.18, 2.1.22 to
2.1.23 and 2.1.28 to 2.1.36.
Fuel cost (Gas and Oil) for RGTPS had increased by 103 paisa per unit from
165 paisa to 268 paisa during 2004-05 to 2007-08. The rise in fuel cost was
mainly due to the failure of the RRVUNL to secure full supply of gas. The
inability to use enhanced gas supply effectively resulted in substantial underutilization of one Gas Turbine (GT) and Steam Turbo Generator (STG) etc. as
discussed in detail in paragraphs 2.1.14 and 2.1.24 to 2.1.26.
The fuel cost of RRVUNL to total generation cost increased from 86 per cent
in 2004-05 to 93 per cent in 2007-08.
Procurement
Procurement of Coal
2.1.8 The RRVUNL assesses the requirement of fuel on the basis of annual
generation targets fixed for KSTPS and SSTPS and approved by the RERC.
27
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
KSTPS and SSTPS work out the quarterly requirement on the basis of annual
targets. The CEA recommends quarterly requirement of the TPS to the SLC
which allots coal linkages from different collieries i.e. SECL (Korea-Rewa),
SECL (Korba) and NCL and also allows the import of coal as and when
necessary.
Coal is purchased from coal companies against proforma invoices. The
RRVUNL makes weekly ad hoc payment of coal to coal companies on the
basis of the quarterly linkages allocated by the SLC. The rate of coal (grade
wise) is determined by the Ministry of Coal. On receipt of coal at TPSs, the
grade of coal is assessed by a third party jointly appointed by both TPSs and
coal companies and a final bill or grade slippage claim is raised for settlement
of coal cost.
The year-wise data of coal procured from different coal fields during review
period are given below:
Name of
Coal
companies
SECL
Korea
rewa
NCL
Total
(superior)
SECL
Korba
Raw
SECL
Korba raw
(washed)
Total
(inferior)
Total
(Others)
Grand
Total
Total
value
(Rs. in
crore)
2004-05
Coal procured (lakh MT)
2005-06
2006-07
2007-08
2008-09
KSTPS
SSTPS
KSTPS
SSTPS
KSTPS
SSTPS
KSTPS
SSTPS
KSTPS
21.00
22.39
20.45
22.08
21.47
23.68
24.11
26.16
22.48
SSTPS
22.04
11.71
32.71
8.07
30.46
8.92
29.37
5.10
27.18
4.07
25.54
2.36
26.04
4.14
28.25
1.83
27.99
8.55
31.03
7.13
29.17
19.83
20.91
17.13
22.08
25.36
22.83
13.02
16.86
2.47
6.46
0
7.14
2.79
7.11
0.77
9.79
11.86
15.48
23.01
24.75
19.83
28.05
19.92
29.19
26.13
32.62
24.88
32.34
25.48
31.21
1.03
3.61
4.11
4.89
3.30
4.03
3.34
3.54
3.54
3.90
53.57
62.12
53.40
61.26
54.97
62.69
56.47
63.87
60.05
64.28
548.10
586.84
661.02
713.13
638.98
766.77
721.39
925.34
942.24
1080.92
The RRVUNL executed (May 1999) Fuel Supply Agreement (FSA) with
SECL for supply of coal to both the TPSs for three years valid up to May
2002. TPSs continued to obtain supply of coal according to terms and
conditions of said FSA with coal companies without executing new
agreement. The new draft FSA was under evaluation and finalization at
various levels for more than seven years and approved belatedly in August
2009. The main reason for delay was disagreement on various clauses of FSA
between the coal companies and RRVUNL. Reaching an agreement on such
clauses took almost seven years, part of which was avoidable with timely
pursuance and follow up.
28
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
Poor linkage materialization
2.1.9 The RRVUNL appoints liaison agent for maximum realisation of coal
supplies to TPSs against linkage allotted by SLC and/or reduction of shortages
in coal supplies received at TPS and accordingly apart from the remuneration,
bonus was payable for materialisation of linkage more than specified, while
penalty was recoverable for failure to get specified linkage which was
prescribed at 92 per cent of allocated linkages. Further, as per clause 5.12 of
the work order the coal liaison agent was responsible to ensure that supply is
dispatched against approved linkages and the required quantity of coal is
moved by Railway from the allocated collieries to TPS.
The year-wise targeted generation as reported to SLC, actual generation,
requirement of coal as per the targeted generation, linkage allotment, actual
receipt of coal and excess/shortage with reference to required coal for standard
generation during the review period have been shown below:
Year
1
2004-05
Total
2005-06
Total
2006-07
Total
2007-08
Power Targeted
Actual
stations generation generation
as reported (MUs)
to SLC
(MUs)
2
KSTPS
SSTPS
KSTPS
SSTPS
KSTPS
SSTPS
KSTPS
SSTPS
Total
2008-09
Total
Grand
total
KSTPS
SSTPS
8440
9891
18331
8543
10475
19018
8681
9984
18665
8551
Coal
Linkage
Actual
Excess(+)/
requirement quantity Receipt (lakh Short(-) receipt
for targeted
(lakh
MT)
of coal
generation as MT)
(lakh MT)
reported to
(7-5)
SLC
(lakh MT)
4
5
6
7
8
7430.72
57.34
60.45
53.57
-3.77
9362.32
64.94
70.50
62.12
-2.82
16793.04
122.28
130.95
115.69
-6.59
8294.15
57.90
60.60
53.40
-4.50
9951.22
68.09
70.50
61.26
-6.83
18245.37
125.99
131.10
114.66
-11.33
8162.63
59.26
67.80
54.97
-4.29
10205.59
65.17
68.40
62.69
-2.48
18368.22
124.43
136.20
117.66
-6.77
8395.46
61.89
68.70
56.47
-5.42
10707
19258
8843
11151
10222.52
18617.98
8674.16
9740.61
70.66
132.55
65.17
77.11
78.75
147.45
70.50
75.30
63.87
120.34
60.05
64.28
-6.79
-12.21
-5.12
-12.83
19994
95266
18414.77
90439.38
142.28
647.53
145.80
691.50
124.33
592.68
-17.95
-54.85
3
It would be seen that actual receipt of coal was lower than the requirement in
all the years of review period and shortfall in coal receipt increased from 6.59
lakh MT in 2004-05 to 17.95 lakh MT in 2008-09. Audit observed that despite
allotment of higher linkage of 691.50 lakh MT which was more than the
requirement, the RRVUNL could secure actual receipt of only 592.68 lakh
MT of coal which constituted 85.71 per cent of allotted linkage and 91.53
per cent of required linkage during the period under review. The
materialization of the linkages was not adequate and contributed to shortfall in
actual receipt of 54.85 lakh MT of coal. Despite entrusting the work of
ensuring adequate linkage of fuel to a liaison agent and prescribing incentive
for improving materialization of linkage beyond 92 per cent, actual receipt of
coal was inadequate and the RRVUNL did not effectively address the lower
29
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
materialization of linkage with timely payment of coal supplies, effective
follow up with Railways, Ministry of Coal and liaison agents etc. The delay in
payment of coal supplies was due to absence of proper fund management of
power sector companies by Rajasthan Rajya Vidyut Prasaran Nigam Limited
(RRVPNL) upto August 2007 following unbundling of the Rajasthan State
Electricity Board (RSEB) and by RRVUNL thereafter. The coal supplies were
also adversely affected due to the delay in timely payment for supplies which
increased from average delay of 2 days during 2004-05 to 6-7 days during
2005-06 and to 16-17 days during 2006-07.
The RRVUNL failed to take advantage of allotment of higher linkage for
improving its performance as well as assisting in turnaround in the working of
the Discoms.
The Management in the exit conference, while agreeing to fact of para stated
(September 2009) that actual generation was higher than the targets approved
by CEA.
The actual generation was higher than the targets approved by CEA except in
2008-09 for SSTPS and there was possibility of higher generation as well as
maintaining of safe level of coal by securing higher coal materialisation during
review period.
Decrease in linkages from superior coalfields
2.1.10 The SLC allocated linkages of coal from various coal fields having
different grade of coal. As freight constitute major cost of total cost of coal, it
was required that the RRVUNL made adequate efforts for follow up and
pursue with various authorities including SLC, Ministry of Coal etc. for
allotment of coal linkages from superior coalfields having better grade of coal.
It was noticed that the linkages allotted by SLC from the superior coalfields of
SECL (Korea-Rewa) and NCL had decreased from 60.30 (2004-05) to 42.55
(2008-09) per cent in respect of KSTPS. Decrease in respect of SSTPS was
from 44.05 to 37.45 per cent during the period under review. It was noticed
that the distance of coal field having 'F' grade (i.e. lower grade coal) was more
by 200 to 300 Kms (1,717 Kms as against 1,400-1,500 Kms) in respect of
SSTPS, thus requiring higher payment of freight for lower quality of coal. It
was noticed that freight cost was higher by Rs. 300 per MT during 2007-08
affecting cost structure of generation. The impact of higher freight worked out
to 20 paisa per unit for electricity generated from lower grade coal received
from far places which ranged between 8.58 to 11.70 per cent of generation
cost during review period. The RRVUNL did not take up matter effectively
for allotment of higher grade coal from collieries located nearer to the TPS.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that it was
not within their control and they were helpless in this regard.
Procurement of Imported coal
2.1.11 Ministry of Power, Government of India looking at wide gap between
demand and availability of coal, directed (September 2004) the power utilities
30
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
to either import the coal or reduce generation to the extent of coal shortages
and also suggested to consider services of MMTC (PSU) due to experience in
the field of import of coal. The State Government also accorded its approval to
import coal from Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) though the imported coal
is two to three times costlier as against the indigenous coal. The imported coal
being high calorific value coal which could be used by blending upto
10 per cent with indigenous coal. The RRVUNL imported total of 11.17 lakh
MT coal against the total linkage of 15.30 lakh MT utilizing only 73 per cent
of linkage allotted in respect of imported coal during the period under review.
Lower utilization of linkage of imported coal also affected the generation of
power.
Procurement of Beneficiated coal
Due to nonutilisation of full
quantity of raw coal
linkage for
beneficiation of coal,
the RRVUNL failed
to avail the
envisaged savings of
Rs. 24.79 crore.
2.1.12 The process of washing raw coal of inferior quality at washery in order
to remove coal dust, stones and shells and cutting the coal into proper size is
called beneficiation. The beneficiated coal is also called washed coal, while
saving transportation cost by way of eliminating mud/coal dust, stones and
shells transported along with coal from coal fields (between 20 to 22.5
per cent) and yielding better quality of coal, improves calorific value and
reduces maintenance of coal handling plant and ash handling plants. It also
meets the objective of reduction of ash content in coal, thereby reducing the
pollution and enabling clean environment as stipulated by the Ministry of
Environment and Forest (MOEF). The MOEF notified (September 1997) that
the TPS situated at distance of more than 1,000 KMs from the pitheads and the
power stations situated in polluted areas should use beneficiated coal (from
June 2002) with ash percentage limited to 34 per cent on annualized basis. In
view of the benefits of beneficiation and requirement to comply with the
statutory requirement, steps were initiated in May 2001 for awarding the work.
It was noticed that despite the directions for use of beneficiated coal by June
2002 as per notification (September 1997), RRVUNL could commence the
use of beneficiated coal for SSTPS in December 2002 (delay of six months)
and for KSTPS in June 2005 (delay of three years). Thus, the RRVUNL could
not comply with the statutory requirement by due dates and also lost out
envisaged benefits of beneficiated coal. It was also noticed that the RRVUNL
could use only 76.31 to 92.53 per cent of raw coal allotted for beneficiation
during period under review. The failure of the Management to take timely
action on initiating proposal, calling tenders, awarding work for beneficiation
and materialising the linkage of raw coal were the main reasons for lower
utilization of allotted raw coal for beneficiation. Thus, due to failure of the
RRVUNL to use full quantity of raw coal linkage for beneficiation of coal, the
envisaged savings of Rs. 24.79 crore could not be availed during the period
under review.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that
insufficient washery capacity, non materialization of linkage of raw coal and
non availability of rakes from Railways were the main reasons for their
viability to avail full benefits of beneficiation and were beyond the control of
management.
31
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
The contention of the management is not convincing as it could have avoided
the instances by adequate planning and proper follow up.
Acceptance of lower yield beneficiated coal
2.1.13 The SLC allotted raw coal (F grade) having ash content upto 42
per cent for beneficiation from Korba coal field of SECL to be washed at
private washery for which the RRVUNL has to award work order for washing
of coal and has to pay washing charges on the coal so washed by washery. The
RRVUNL awarded work orders to Aryan Coal Beneficiation Pvt. Ltd. for
beneficiation of coal on 23 October 2002 and 25 July 2006 with guaranteed
yield of 77.5 per cent of raw coal supplied with ash content of 30 per cent.
The management of the RRVUNL was aware that coal from Korba coal field
had easy washability with the average yield of 94.8 per cent of washed coal
with ash content of 34 per cent as per study/reports of Asian Development
Bank (ADB). It was observed that despite easy washability with expected high
yield, the RRVUNL did not explore any option for prescribing higher yield of
beneficiated coal. Thus, acceptance of lower yield was not in the interest of
the RRVUNL. Even if the yield was prescribed at 80 per cent with 30 per cent
of ash content which was possible based on the report of ADB, the RRVUNL
could have saved an amount of Rs. 27.49 crore comprising of Rs. 10.76 crore
in KSTPS and Rs. 16.73 crore in case of SSTPS in the form of lower use of
raw coal for the same output of beneficiated coal.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that yield
was prescribed as per orders finalized by Punjab, which was the first state to
finalise tenders for washed coal. It further stated that for higher yield washing
charges would be more.
The reply is not convincing as the management did not explore for higher
yield of 80 per cent and even with higher washing charges the benefit of
higher yield could have been more.
Procurement of Gas
2.1.14 Gas Turbine I (GT-1) of 35.5 MW was functioning since January 1996
at Ramgarh, for which gas availability was ensured by agreement with GAIL
for purchase and delivery of 0.55 Million Metric Standard Cubic Meter Per
Day (MMSCMD) of gas. One additional Gas Turbine (GT-2) of 37.5 MW was
commissioned in August 2002 with the provision of operating GT on dual
firing of fuel i.e. gas and oil. Dual firing was provided to take care of the event
of non-availability of required quantum of additional gas. The feed stock for
the GT-1 and GT-2 was gas and HSD. Steam Turbo Generator (STG) of 37.5
MW commissioned in April 2003 was using waste steam recovered (left after
use in GT-1 and GT-2) as its feed stock. GAIL agreed to enhance supply of
gas in August 2003 from 0.55 to 0.75 MMSCMD to the extent of availability.
It was noticed that against minimum requirement of 1.0 MMSCMD for the
operation of both GTs at the same time, the increased availability of 0.75
MMSCMD of gas from October 2004 was also not sufficient to operate both
GTs at the same time, thus continuously underutilizing one GT and STG.
Audit noticed that adequate quantity of gas supply was not available for both
32
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
the GTs, hence indecisiveness of management in not operating both the GTs
on dual fuel using HSD as envisaged in project report resulted in substantially
lower utilization of capacity. The position of targeted generation at 70 per cent
as fixed by the RERC and actual generation and percentage of actual
generation to targeted generation for GT-1, GT-2 and STG as well as overall
Plant Load Factor (PLF) is given in the Annexure-7. The Plant Load Factor
(PLF), a measure of the output of a power plant compared to the maximum
output it could produce, was always substantially lower due to failure of the
RRVUNL to tie up requirement of fuel i.e. gas for the project and not
operating plant using HSD except during the Rabi period. The percentage of
actual PLF ranged between 36 and 45 against 70 per cent fixed by the RERC
in determination of tariff during the review period. Further, the PLF was lower
than 20 per cent in 17 months in GT-I, six months in GT-2 and 14 months in
STG during the review period. In view of the less availability of gas, the
RGTPS continued the operation of both GTs by generating one GT at full load
and other on part loads or shutting down the second GT which resulted in
shortfall in generation of 602.74 MUs valuing Rs. 137.40 crore in GT-I,
106.54 MUs valuing Rs. 20.52 crore in GT-2 and 717.36 MUs valuing Rs. 159
crore in STG during the review period. The commissioning of the GT-2 and
STG without ensuring the requirement of supply of gas and non operation on
dual fuel resulted in loss of revenue of Rs. 316.92 crore due to less generation.
Failure of
management to
effectively plan the
use of gas resulted in
loss of generation of
1,426.64 MUs.
It was observed that the RERC considered PLF at 70 per cent as against PLF
of 80 per cent envisaged in project report, thus allowing relaxation of
10 per cent in PLF and consequent advantage in the determination of two part
tariff i.e. fixed charges and variable charges. Fixed charges remain fixed
irrespective of increase/decrease in output, and includes depreciation, interest,
lease rental, operation and maintenance expenditure etc. while variable
charges varies proportionately to the level of output and includes cost of gas,
oil etc. Despite this, the RRVUNL did not even operate the plant at
70 per cent PLF and passed on extra burden of fixed cost of Rs. 72.50 crore
being the cost of the underutilized capacity on Discoms (Consumers of
Company). This was despite the fact that the RERC also fixed recovery of
variable cost for plant using HSD or combined fuel i.e. gas and HSD.
Thus, failure of the management to effectively plan the use of fuel resulted in
loss of generation of electricity of 1,426.64 MUs valued at Rs. 316.92 crore
and extra burden of Rs. 72.50 crore on the Discoms primarily because of
substantial underutilization of plants.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that GAIL
could not provide the increased amount of gas from the fields of Oil India
Limited. Gas arrangements are now being tied up with GAIL from the Focus
gas fields.
33
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
Transportation of Fuel
2.1.15 The coal from different collieries of SECL and NCL is transported
through railway wagons. The rate of freight is determined by the Railways.
Freight is a major component of cost of coal to the RRVUNL. The
transportation of coal through Railways includes the following risks:
•
transit losses/shortages due to pilferages and theft which is direct loss
to the RRVUNL as neither coal company nor Railways reimburse the
transit loss.
•
incidence of overloading charges, under loading charges and blockage
of funds due to incidence of claims on this account.
•
payment of demurrage if the wagons are not unloaded within
prescribed time limit.
The RRVUNL received total quantity of 592.68 lakh MT of coal from
different collieries through Railways and incurred Rs. 6,262.41 crore towards
freight during the period under review. The freight cost to total cost of fuel
ranged between 41 and 51 per cent during the period under review. The freight
cost and total cost of fuel and its percentage are given below:(Rs. in crore)
Year
Freight
Total cost
Percentage of freight to
total cost
2004-05
1173.35
2308.29
50.83
2005-06
1211.72
2585.87
46.86
2006-07
1279.37
2685.12
47.65
2007-08
1214.33
2861.05
42.44
2008-09
1383.64
3406.81
40.61
Total
6262.41
13847.14
45.23
A liaison agent was appointed for effective coordination between the collieries
and authorities of Railways and for smooth transportation of fuel, timely
loading and unloading and securing linkages. The observations of audit
relating to deficiency in transportation of fuel are discussed in succeeding
paragraphs.
Transit loss of coal
2.1.16 Transit loss of coal represents difference between the billed and actual
quantity of coal received at the power station. Coal is transported by Railways
at consignee’s risk and as sale of coal is deemed to have been finalised at
pithead, therefore, neither the collieries nor the Railways reimburse the transit
loss. Therefore, strict control on the transit loss was essential as excess transit
losses affects the generation of electricity and utilization of TPSs and further
worsen the power shortage scenario. A statement showing transit losses for
both KSTPS and SSTPS in respect of each coal field for the period under
34
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
review is given below.
Transit loss (in per cent)
Year
NCL
SECL
(Korea- Rewa)
SECL
(Korba)
SECL
(Washed)
Total
KSTPS SSTPS KSTPS SSTPS KSTPS SSTPS KSTPS SSTPS KSTPS SSTPS
2004-05 1.67 -0.18
4.32
2005-06 3.23
1.31
4.98
2006-07 1.32
1.49
2.66
2007-08 1.89
1.33
1.73
2008-09 2.92
2.26
1.98
Note: (-) indicates gain in transit.
Transit losses for
KSTPS were
significantly higher
than the SSTPS
despite proximity to
pithead. The excess
transit losses
(over and above 1.5
per cent) worked
out to
Rs. 49.95 crore for
2.45 lakh MT of
coal.
3.50
4.12
2.68
1.41
1.46
2.49
1.53
0.52
0.47
2.16
0.72
0.42
0.87
1.01
1.33
0
1.84
-1.42
0.96
1.17
0.68
1.09
0.93
1.14
0.85
3.05
3.31
1.46
1.26
1.80
1.67
2.06
1.64
1.22
1.29
Though transit losses (in case of KSTPS) had declined over the period from
3.05 per cent in 2004-05 to 1.80 per cent in 2008-09 and from 1.67 per cent in
2004-05 to 1.29 per cent in 2008-09 for SSTPS, these are still high at 2.92
per cent for NCL- KSTPS and 1.98 per cent for SECL (CIC)-KSTPS. Further,
it can be seen from the above table that transit losses for KSTPS were
significantly higher than the SSTPS despite SSTPS being located 1,410 to
1,717 Kms away from collieries as against distance of KSTPS being only 666
to 1,013 Kms from the collieries. Transit losses in case of coal received from
SECL (Korea- Rewa) were higher at KSTPS as compared to losses at SSTPS
during review period except the year 2006-07. The RRVUNL did not analyze
the reasons for the higher transit losses in case of KSTPS for taking remedial
measures. Further, the RRVUNL had not fixed any norms for transit losses
keeping in view the distance from colliery and other factors with a view to
exercise control over the losses. It was noticed that the transit loss allowed to
the contractor in case of beneficiated coal from October 2002 was fixed at 1.5
per cent which involved road transport from colliery to washery and by rail
from washery to TPSs and the losses of less than 1.5 per cent were achieved
by the contractor during the review period. Thus, the transit losses for all other
coal transported directly by rail from colliery to TPSs should be lower than 1.5
per cent. The excess transit losses (over and above 1.5 per cent) worked out to
Rs. 49.95 crore for 2.45 lakh MT of coal during the period under review.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that transit
losses vary due to weighment tolerance difference, pilferage, sizing of coal,
route difference and route of coal for KSTPS is more vulnerable to higher
pilferage, however, transit losses had declined generally and more efforts
would be made to restrict the transit losses.
Short recovery of idle freight of Rs. five crore on excess shortages due to
weak conditions of contract
2.1.17 The objective of the awarding of beneficiation of the coal was to
reduce the ash content and improve the quality of coal at lower cost, which
was possible to be achieved by determining ash content and quality of coal on
rake to rake to basis. The RRVUNL prescribed evaluation of ash content in the
beneficiated coal and yield based on weighted average of 20 rakes, which was
further increased to 30 rakes (July 2006). The provision of evaluation of ash
content in the beneficiated coal and yield based on weighted average of
35
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
20 rakes and 30 rakes was at disadvantage to the RRVUNL as impact of rakes
supplied with higher ash contents i.e. inferior quality coal was neutralized
under weighted average method. Determination of average ash content of
20/30 rakes was not a prudent decision as this has provided an opportunity to
the firm to supply higher ash content coal in number of rakes without any
disincentive.
Similarly, despite payment of freight on rake to rake basis to Railways, the
computation and recovery of idle freight on shortages in excess of maximum
1.5 per cent allowed on the basis of weighted average of 20 rakes and 30 rakes
instead of rake to rake basis was not in the interest of the RRVUNL. It was
noticed that the RRVUNL incurred extra expenditure of Rs. five crore
comprising of Rs. 1.73 crore for KSTPS and Rs. 3.27 crore for SSTPS during
2007-09 alone, which could not be recovered due to computation on the basis
of weighted average of 20 rakes and 30 rakes instead of rake to rake basis.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that recovery
was as per contract conditions, they however agreed to look into the matter in
future contracts.
Abnormal increase in overloading and under loading charges
2.1.18 As per clause 8.2 of FSA, the proforma invoice was to be prepared on
rake to rake basis, charging basic price of coal, sizing charges, and all other
statutory charges (the idle freight resulting from under loading of wagons and
50 per cent of overloading charges was to be reduced), shall be delivered to
the purchaser’s bankers for payment within two banking working days of
presentation of proforma invoice. The details of overloading and underloading charges paid by the RRVUNL to the Railways, share of coal
companies and outstanding recovery position during the period under review
are detailed below:(Rs. in crore)
Year
Overloading charges
Under loading charges
Share of overloading Overloading charges
charges of coal
outstanding for
companies at the rate
recovery
of 50 per cent
Share of under
loading charges of
coal companies
at the rate of
100 per cent
Under loading
charges outstanding
for recovery
KSTPS SSTPS Total KSTPS SSTPS Total KSTPS SSTPS Total KSTPS SSTPS Total
2004-05 1.73 3.79 5.52
2005-06 4.64 10.7015.34
2006-07 4.61 6.2310.84
2007-08 2.31 3.78 6.09
2008-09 0.58 0.93 1.51
Total 13.87 25.4339.30
0.00 3.79 3.79 0.89 1.54 2.43
0.00 10.70 10.70 3.63 7.31 10.94
0.00 6.23 6.23 4.60 7.33 11.93
0.00 3.78 3.78 11.38 23.31 34.69
0.04 0.93 0.97 10.74 20.65 31.39
0.04 25.43 25.47 31.24 60.14 91.38
0.63 1.54 2.17
0.42 7.31 7.73
0.69 7.33 8.02
0.42 23.3123.73
4.55 20.6525.20
6.71 60.1466.85
The RRVUNL appointed Naresh Kumar and Company (coal liaison agent) for
supervision of coal rakes consigned to KSTPS and SSTPS. As per clause 5.03
of the work order, it was the responsibility of coal liaison agent to supervise
the loading and weighment at all the points and to ensure that the wagons were
loaded upto the full carrying capacity and to avoid instances of overloading.
These costs were avoidable and controllable to large extent. It could be seen
from above table that the share of overloading charges was significantly
36
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
higher at Rs. 15.34 crore and Rs. 10.84 crore during 2005-06 and 2006-07
respectively and share of SSTPS of Rs. 25.43 crore constituted 64.71 per cent
of total overloading charges of Rs. 39.30 crore during the period of review.
The whole amount of Rs. 25.43 crore towards overloading charges in respect
of SSTPS was outstanding for recovery. It was further observed in audit that
neither the SECL was deducting the overloading charges from proforma
invoices as per the FSA nor the RRVUNL was deducting the overloading
charges while making the payments to SECL. The SSTPS has not taken any
concrete action to recover the claims except submitting the claims. The claims
of overloading charges in respect of SSTPS had accumulated to the extent of
Rs. 27.23 crore (including Rs. 1.80 crore up to 2003-04) as on 31 March 2009.
Thus, overloading had significantly increased during 2005-06 and 2006-07
indicating the failure of the coal agent in effective control of the loading of the
coal at collieries as there was no clause of penalty for overloading and under
loading in the work order of liaison agent. Thus, an amount of Rs. 94.12 crore
paid in respect of under loading and overloading claims remained blocked,
substantially affecting financial position of the RRVUNL mainly due to
inadequate follow up.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that they
were operating under tough conditions imposed by the Railways and due to
non execution of FSA, claims are not being admitted by the coal companies,
however, efforts would be made to settle these claims. The reply does not
address the role of coal agent.
Quality assurance
Quality assurance and sampling
2.1.19 As per clause 6.00 of FSA, sampling and quality analysis for rail fed
stations was to be carried at both sending and receiving end by one
independent third party/agency. RRVUNL invites tender for appointment of
third party agency for sampling analysis but the final decision for such
appointment was done by the Joint Tender Committee (JTC) which includes
the representative of both RRVUNL and SECL/CIL. The payment of charges
for sampling at colliery end was to be made by coal companies and those done
at power stations end by the RRVUNL. The sampling analysis should be
carried out in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Bureau of Indian
Standard specifications/mutually agreed procedure on rake to rake basis.
Results of sampling decide the grade of coal. RRVUNL has to make the
advance payment for the coal, based on the declared grade of coal by
collieries. If receipt of lower grade of coal is reported in third party/referee
report, then grade slippage claims are to be lodged with concerned coal
companies.
Defective sampling procedure
2.1.20 Rake-wise sample collection was to be done in accordance with the
mutually agreed procedure under the IS 436 (Part-I, Section–I), 1964 and
37
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
IS 436 (Part–I, section–II) 1976 modified up to date. As against number of
sub-lots to be taken from the wagons received on the basis of the total weight
of the rake received, a maximum 25 per cent of the wagons were to be
selected at random from the sub-lots. It was observed in audit that the first and
last wagon are always selected as sample and the rest of the wagons were
divided into four sub-lots and 25 per cent of the wagons were selected at
random from sub-lots for drawing the gross sample, thus affecting the
randomness of sample and being a departure from laid down procedures.
Audit felt that the justification of this procedure was questionable as it
sacrifices randomness of sample and correctness of sampling results based on
which the grade of coal was decided. RRVUNL did not take sample for
analysis at its own laboratory or any other Government recognized laboratory
to ascertain the effectiveness of sampling procedure and whether the same was
correct and protecting its interest. In absence of energy audit, the role of
quality assurance and effective sampling was more important but RRVUNL
had not followed proper quality assurance procedures.
Delayed sampling analysis
2.1.21 Timely sample collection, analysis, documentation and preparation of
comparative statement of the results of the loading and unloading end were
critical essence of quality assurance procedure. As per the work orders for
sampling analysis, placed from time to time, the analysis of results of the
samples should be submitted within seven days and the comparative
statements of the loading and unloading results should be submitted within
10 days. Out of 3,186 sample reports test checked, 798 cases were submitted
with the delay which ranged upto one month in 491 cases and one to three
months in 307 cases. Similarly, in 729 cases the comparative statements were
also submitted with the delay ranging up to one month in 478 cases and one to
three months in 93 cases and more than three months in 158 cases. Further out
of 3,186 reports, 270 reported receipt of lower grade of coal than declared
grade by Collieries. Audit observed that claims of Rs. 27.98 lakh in respect of
grade difference for the period of May 2007 to February 2008 could not be
lodged as report of referee at loading end were not available with KSTPS.
These substantial delays also led to delayed submission of various grade
slippage claims as brought out in paragraph 2.1.30.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that system
of sampling has been changed and according to new FSA signed recently,
sampling at the loading point would be final. As regards delayed sampling,
management stated that reports were obtained and claims were lodged or were
being lodged.
Consumption of fuel
High incidence of consumption of coal
2.1.22 The position of excess coal consumption against the norms fixed by
38
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
the RERC in determination of tariff for the review period is given in the
Annexure-8. It could be seen that actual consumption of coal at KSTPS
(0.650 to 0.684 Kg per KWH) and at SSTPS (0.5642 to 0.6098 Kg per KWH)
was higher in all the years of review period. Poor quality of coal (paragraphs
2.1.10 and 2.1.30), receipts of stone and shale along with coal (paragraph
2.1.31), use of coal without proper sampling (paragraph 2.1.20), excess heat in
process of generation (paragraph 2.1.23) etc. were the reasons for excess
consumption of coal.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that these
norms of RERC were for determination of tariff and were based on specific
gross calorific value of coal, while gross calorific value of actual coal received
was less.
The reply is not convincing as even after considering the gross calorific value
of actual coal received on yearly basis, the coal consumption was higher by
Rs. 135.14 crore. Further excess heat used in process of generation worked out
on monthly basis led to excess consumption of coal amounting to Rs. 245.10
crore as brought out in succeeding paragraphs. The management did not take
other measures such as better blending of imported coal, improved storage to
reduce loss of calorific value of coal to optimise specific coal consumption.
Excess consumption of coal due to high incidence of heat rate
The excess
consumption of coal
based on monthly
average basis due to
higher SHR than the
norms in respect of
both KSTPS and
SSTPS was valued at
Rs. 245.10 crore.
2.1.23 Gross Station Heat Rate (SHR) refers to the heat energy input in Kcal
required for generating one KWH of electrical energy at generating terminals.
The norms of SHR for each unit of the power stations have been prescribed by
the RERC in accordance with Terms and Conditions for Determination of
Tariff Regulations, 2004. The RERC prescribed the SHR of 3,100 Kcal/KWH
for 110 MW thermal units for 2004-05 with reduction of 25 Kcal per annum to
achieve targeted SHR of 3,000 Kcal/KWH. The SHR of 2,500 Kcal/KWH was
prescribed for above 110 MW thermal units (KSTPS and SSTPS). It was
observed in audit that there was wide disparity in heat used for per KWH unit
generation of electricity from month to month basis. It was noticed during the
audit that heat used for unit II (110 MW) of KSTPS per KWH unit of
electricity generated ranged between 2,497 Kcal/KWH to 3,597 Kcal/KWH as
against the prescribed norm/standard of 3,100 Kcal/KWH to 3,000 Kcal/KWH
for the period of 2004-05 to 2008-09. This indicated that 2,497 Kcal was used
for producing one unit of electricity in one month, while 3,597 Kcal was used
in another month, reflecting wide variation in consumption of heat rate.
Similarly wide variation existed in other units of KSTPS and SSTPS. High
variation upto 27 per cent from standard prescribed by the RERC required
analysis of reasons for high variation for taking remedial measures to improve
the use of heat in the process of generation. RRVUNL did not analyze the
reasons for such wide variation in use of heat on month to month basis. The
excess consumption of coal based on monthly average basis due to higher
SHR than the norms in respect of both KSTPS and SSTPS was valued at
Rs. 245.10 crore, which indicated that there was adequate scope for
improvement by effective use of heat. RRVUNL needs to take steps and create
systems and infrastructure for optimizing use of heat based on outcome of
energy audit.
39
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
Thermal efficiency is the aggregate of boiler and turbine efficiency. RRVUNL
did not work out the thermal efficiency of each unit as well as for whole TPS
in respect of KSTPS and thereby could not compare the same with the thermal
efficiency guaranteed by the manufacturer or the supplier of the plant. The
SSTPS worked out the thermal efficiency without comparing with the standard
as well as with that guaranteed by the manufacturer.
Excess consumption of gas of Rs. 50.76 crore
Excess heat
consumed in
RGTPS worked
out to 87,319
MKcal equivalent
to 210 MMSCM of
gas valued at
Rs. 50.76 crore.
2.1.24 The RERC prescribed the SHR of 3,000 Kcal/KWH for 2004-05 with
annual reduction of 15 Kcal/KWH in open cycle of RGTPS i.e. operation of
one GT without operation of STG. Further, the SHR of 2,000 Kcal/KWH for
2004-05 with annual reduction of 10 Kcal/KWH was prescribed in combined
cycle i.e. operation of one or two GT with combined operation of STG. Audit
analysis of the consumption of gas vis-à-vis units generated for the review
period revealed that actual heat rate ranged between 2,017 Kcal per unit
(against norms of 1,980 Kcal per unit) to 3,313 Kcal per unit (against the
norms of 1970 Kcal per unit) which was in excess of norms ranging between
37 Kcal per unit to 1,343 Kcal per unit of electricity. Excess heat consumed
during review period in RGTPS worked out to 87,319 Million Kilo Calories
(MKcal) equivalent to 210 Million Metric Standard Cubic Meter (MMSCM)
of gas valued at Rs. 50.76 crore. The reasons for excess consumption of heat
rate against the norms were not analyzed by the management.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that it was
due to operating plants on partial load instead of rated load.
Infructuous expenditure of Rs. 3.25 crore due to less drawls of gas
2.1.25 In terms of article 5.02 of the agreement, RRVUNL was required to
pay for monthly minimum guaranteed off take (MGO) fixed at 80 per cent of
the monthly contracted quantity or actual quantity of gas supplied, whichever
was higher. The GT 1 of the RGTPS was operated with supply of gas
agreement of 0.55 MMSCMD and GAIL agreed (August 2003) to enhance the
supply by 0.2 MMSCMD gas. As against the requirement of 1.0 MMSCMD
for the operation of both the GTs at same time, the enhanced supply to 0.75
MMSCMD was not sufficient. Audit noticed that RGTPS failed to even draw
80 per cent of the 0.55 MMSCMD upto September 2004 and 0.75 MMSCMD
from October 2004 in total period of 15 months* resulting in payment of
Rs. 3.25 crore for MGO charges for which the gas was not drawn.
The Management in the exit conference stated (September 2009) that it was
due to breakdown of the Gas plant. On pointing out that it was related to
period of fifteen months, the Management assured to give detailed reply after
verification of facts.
*
April to September 2005, August 2006 to October 2006, April to June 2008,
September 2008 to October 2008 & March 2009.
40
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
Excess auxiliary consumption
2.1.26 The norms relating to allowable auxiliary consumption were fixed by
the RERC while approving annual revenue requirement and determining tariff.
It was noticed that auxiliary consumption in RGTPS was high ranging from
6.77 to 9.55 per cent as against 5 per cent allowed by the RERC during
2004-05 to 2008-09. The excess consumption was equivalent to 65.91 MUs
valued at Rs. 14.78 crore. Thus, there was need to analyse the specific reasons
contributing to higher auxiliary consumption for taking remedial measure.
The Management in the exit conference informed (September 2009) that it
was due to operating plants on partial load instead of rated load.
Inventory Management
2.1.27 RRVUNL had prescribed safe and critical level of coal stock at 15 days
and seven days respectively as a part of inventory management. RRVUNL
was required to maintain safe level of stock at all the times. RRVUNL was
also required to prescribe periodical system of physical verification for
effective accounting and control purposes. The availability of right quality fuel
in adequate quantity for meeting production targets and the procedure
prescribed for exercising controls on wastages or losses of material, proper
accounting, safe and critical level of coal in terms of days prescribed were
reviewed in audit. It was noticed that inventory level of coal had fallen below
critical level very often during 2007-08 and 2008-09. Coal stock level had
remained below critical level (less than 7 days of requirement) for 168 days in
2007-08 and 247 days in 2008-09 for SSTPS. Similarly, coal stock remained
below critical level on 56 days in 2007-08 and 70 days in 2008-09 in case of
KSTPS. The safe level of stock prescribed at 15 days of requirement was
available only on 35 days for SSTPS and 59 days for KSTPS during two years
period ending 2008-09. As brought out in paragraph 2.1.9, due to non
materialization of linkages, the material required was not sufficient to meet the
targeted generation. RRVUNL admitted that the measurement of coal on
monthly and quarterly basis and reconciliation of receipt, issue (consumption)
and balance etc. were done on provisional basis. Adequate system of monthly
and quarterly measurement of coal did not exist. Proper physical verification
of coal was conducted only once in a year and therefore the performance may
be evaluated on yearly average basis instead of month to month or quarter to
quarter. Thus verification system for inventory assessment, planning, control
on shortage, accounting and reconciliation of receipt, issue (consumption) and
balance etc. was not effective. There was need to improve the infrastructure to
ascertain reliable information in respect of all parameters on monthly basis
and to improve inventory control.
The Management in the exit conference confirmed (September 2009) the
position brought out in paragraph.
41
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
Financial Management
2.1.28 Effective financial management ensures smooth cash flow for
optimizing the performance of all functions of an organization and includes
arranging timely funds from realizations of sales and other income and gaps of
cash flow either by investing to earn return or from borrowing at competitive
interest rate with a view to meet need of all its operational requirements
including purchase of adequate fuel. The systems and procedures should be so
organized that there are no delays in realizations of funds from various sources
including claims from coal companies, Railway etc. as well as no delay in
payments which attracts penalty or affects procurement of fuel and other
resources. There is separate wing to cater the financial needs and RRVUNL
was able to arrange the short term loans at reasonable rates for procurement
for coal, payment of Railway freight etc. RRVUNL prepares the cash flow
statement to optimise use of cash. However, deficiencies in financial
management as noticed in audit are discussed in succeeding paragraphs with
particular reference to fuel management.
Guidance of functional directors
2.1.29 RRVUNL did not have any full time functional directors such as
Director (Fuel), Director (Technical) and Director (Finance). It was noticed
that considering the size and operations of the RRVUNL, there was need for
full time functional directors particularly Director (Finance) for efficient and
effective operations of the Company. The Government, however, nominated
full time functional Director (Finance) in April 2007 to take care of needs of
finance side.
Delay in realization of claim against coal companies
Claims of grade difference
2.1.30 The FSA stipulated that in case receipt of lower grade of coal is
reported in third party/referee report, then grade slippage claims are to be
lodged with concerned coal companies. It was observed that claims included
the basic value of coal plus Central Sales Tax (CST) and claims of Rs. 15.96
crore as on 31 March 2009 were outstanding. Audit observed that claims on
account of difference in the amount of CST arising due to decrease of cost of
coal of grade slippage were outstanding on the ground that claims of particular
financial year were not submitted during the same financial year. It was
noticed that Rs. 1.15 crore out of Rs. 1.46 crore in respect of SSTPS and
Rs. 1.65 crore in respect of KSTPS were on account of CST that were not
reimbursed due to non submission of claims during the same financial year.
Other reason for delay in submission of claims was also attributable to delay
in receipt of sampling reports. Audit noticed that the chances of recovery of
CST claims (Rs. 2.80 crore) and old claims pertaining to period prior to
2004-05 (Rs. 8.21crore) appeared to be bleak.
42
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
Claims in respect of Stones
2.1.31 As per clause 3.2.2 of FSA, the coal supplied by the seller shall
generally be free from oversize stones, stones above 200mm shall be
segregated by the purchaser and equivalent cost of the same along with 50 per
cent freight (except surcharge) royalty and taxes will be paid by the seller. The
purchaser shall notify the seller for inspection of stones. The size of more than
200 mm stones shall be ascertained by joint weighment after which the stones
will be disposed of away from the site of stacking. On review of the claims of
stones, it was noticed that huge amount is outstanding against coal companies
on account of oversize stones received by SSTPS along with coal. Claims of
Rs. 2.01 crore lodged on account of oversize stones received at SSTPS were
outstanding for settlement against coal companies as on 31 March 2009.
SSTPS also could not lodge claims for 12,387.47 MT stones (claimable
amount of Rs. 1.54 crore) accumulated during the period June 2007 to March
2009 due to non assessment/inspection of the stones by the representative of
coal companies. Thus, an amount of Rs. 3.55 crore was outstanding for
settlement of these claims which pertained to the review period.
Delay in payment for coal supplies
2.1.32 It was observed that RRVUNL was not paying for coal supplies on
schedule due to improper management of its financial resources. The
payments were made weekly on ad-hoc basis without any reference to due
dates of various bills. It was noticed that in most of the cases, due dates were
not mentioned in the bill cum payment register of coal supplies and there was
no monitoring of payment on the basis of due dates. It was noticed that large
amount of funds were blocked in number of claims, where the recovery efforts
were not adequate and there was delay in payment of coal supplies which
resulted in not getting full linkage of coal for both KSTPS and SSTPS as
brought out in para 2.1.9. The demand of interest in terms of provision of FSA
at the rate of 12 per cent per annum for delay beyond the provision of FSA
was raised by the coal companies, while short term borrowing rates were
lower than 12 per cent ranging from 7 per cent to 10 per cent during review
period. It was noticed that SECL demanded (January 2006 and December
2007) interest of Rs. 19.01 crore (KSTPS- Rs. 9.98 crore and SSTPS Rs. 9.03
crore) for the period from 2003-04 to 2006-07 for the delay in release of
payment of coal. The Coal India Limited (CIL) stated (July 2006) that extent
of delay in release of payment had increased to 16-17 days during 2006-07
from 6-7 days in 2005-06 and 2 days in 2004-05. It was also observed that the
RRVUNL deposited an interest free advance of Rs. 6.45 crore during 2004-05
and Rs. 5.95 crore during November 2004 to May 2005 with NCL towards
monthly linkage of one lakh MT each for KSTPS and SSTPS respectively.
Audit noticed that though the linkage has been reduced progressively to
30,000 MT for KSTPS and 15,000 MT for SSTPS in 2007-08, RRVUNL did
not seek refund or adjustment against supply in phased manner in accordance
with the reduction in the linkage, thus carrying higher than required interest
free advance with NCL, while delaying payment in respect of SECL.
However, the excess amount of advance of Rs. 2.60 crore in respect of KSTPS
and Rs. 1.74 crore in respect of was SSTPS was adjusted belatedly during
43
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
August 2008. Thus, non adjustment of excess funds lying with NCL adversely
affected its fund position in paying other dues in time. RRVUNL is yet to
settle the demand of interest of Rs. 19.01 crore.
Non pursuance for refund of deposits of Rs. 7.50 crore
2.1.33 A surcharge of 10 per cent of freight is payable on booking wagon on
'To Pay’ basis. Railways under its scheme exempt levy of surcharge on
maintaining the deposit for transportation charges equal to the monthly linkage
of coal rakes. RRVUNL maintained Rs. 40.10 crore as advance payment equal
to the monthly linkage of coal rakes (30 December 2004) which was increased
to Rs. 48 crore in March 2007. The Railway insisted on e-payment of freight
following improvement in the banking system. The Board decided
(13 October 2005) to adopt the e-banking scheme of rail freight towards
movement of coal. Tripartite agreement has been executed with Railways and
banks for e-payment of coal freight charges account in respect of SSTPS on
14 December 2007 and 1 January 2008 with South East Central Railways
(SECR), Bilaspur and East Central Railways (ECR), Hajipur respectively
by providing bank guarantees (BG) of Rs. six crore issued
(9 January 2008) in favour of SECR and Rs. 1.50 crore in favour of ECR but
without adjusting deposit of Rs. 48 crore of the SSTPS lying with Railway
under the advance freight payment scheme. It was observed that non
pursuance of the issue relating to refund or adjustment resulted in blocking of
funds of Rs. 7.50 crore and avoidable interest charges were incurred while
RRVUNL was availing short term loans and overdraft facilities for working
capital requirements. The adjustment or refund was still pending.
Non recovery for change in price of coal from contractor
2.1.34 The provision of contract (Clause 5.23 of the work order of 25 July
2006) awarded for beneficiation of coal, stipulated that on failure in lifting the
coal within the prescribed period and if the price is revised in between, then
the differential price should be recovered from the contractor. The CIL revised
(12 December 2007) the prices of coal of ‘F’ grade from Rs. 606.16 per MT to
Rs. 675.68 per MT. RRVUNL, however, had borne the expenditure of
Rs. 1.03 crore instead of recovering the amount for increased price on the
quantity from the contractor, as the coal was not lifted timely by him.
Extra expenditure due to furnishing bank guarantee to Railways instead of
Government guarantee
2.1.35 The KSTPS provided BG of Rs. six crore for opting for credit note
cum cheque facility from Railways by paying guarantee commission during
February 2004 to February 2006 despite practice of availing Government
guarantee for obtaining the funds from various banks from 2000-01 as the
Government charges commission at the rate of 0.1 per cent only instead of one
per cent charged by bank. Similarly, the SSTPS furnished (January 2008) BG
to Railways (Rs.1.50 crore and Rs. six crore) instead of approaching them for
acceptance of Government guarantee. Thus, RRVUNL incurred extra
expenditure of Rs. 39.72 lakh for guarantee commission as compared to
Government guarantee.
44
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
On various observations relating to financial management, the Management in
the exit conference stated (September 2009) that despite its efforts, the claims
and refunds were not granted by coal companies and Railways. It further
stated that payments are being made on time as far as possible and they were
forced to maintain advance deposit with Railway and coal companies.
Energy Audit
2.1.36 Energy Audit is an important step towards identifying the factors
contributing to inefficient operation of a power station, thus, improving overall
productivity of fuel. It was noticed that Energy Audit was required to be
conducted in compliance with Energy Conservation Act, 2001 and such audit
was being conducted at generating stations of other various entities such as
NTPC Limited and West Bengal Power Development Corporation Limited
etc. Studies carried out in the course of energy audit involve review of the
design and actual operational values of equipment and auxiliaries. It is
intended to ensure that the performance of each section of generation process
is as near as possible to the designed specification. Energy Audit offers
valuable inputs in form of remedial measures for improving the efficiency in
use of fuel. It was noticed that no Energy Audit was conducted either
internally or by out side specialized agency despite objection raised during the
hearing of tariff petition filed in the RERC for the year 2004-05. As discussed
in paragraphs 2.1.23, 2.1.24 and 2.1.26, the KSTPS, SSTPS and RGTPS failed
to maintain the norms of SHR and norms of auxiliary consumption were also
not adhered to in case of RGTPS during the period under review.
The Management in the exit conference while confirming the facts stated
(September 2009) that there was no formal system of Energy Audit and efforts
were made to identify areas of heat losses with the help of experts and
certified energy engineers whenever possible and assured Energy Audit would
be strengthened.
The above matters were referred to the Government in June 2009, their
reply had not been received (September 2009).
Conclusion
Fuel management system did not meet the expectation of being operated
economically and efficiently as follows:•
failure to procure required coal despite allotment of higher linkage
of coal resulting in loss of generation of electricity;
•
envisaged saving could not be realised due to not using full
quantity of washed coal linkages and acceptance of lower yield;
•
due to failure to tie up required gas, under utilisation and non-
45
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
operation of gas based plants on dual fuel resulted in loss of
generation;
•
higher incidence of transit losses of coal led to avoidable losses;
•
the quality of fuel received was not inspected as per the laid down
sampling procedure;
•
the actual consumption of coal, gas was higher than the norms
fixed by the RERC;
•
inadequate inventory management system for coal caused coal
stock falling below critical level on several occasions;
•
inefficient financial management led to non-realization of claims
and delayed payments of fuel supplies; and
•
energy audit was not undertaken despite huge heat losses, higher
consumption of coal and higher auxiliary consumption.
Recommendations
The RRVUNL needs to•
evolve effective control mechanism on coal liaisoning agents to
procure allotted linkages;
•
enhance the use of beneficiated coal to reduce the generation cost;
•
ensure operation of gas based plant on dual fuel to maximise
utilization of envisaged capacity;
•
closely monitor the transit losses and take up the matter at highest
level with the Railways so that these losses are reimbursed by
Railways;
•
devise system to ensure quality assurance as per laid down
procedure of sampling;
•
analyse and if necessary – investigate, the reasons of consumption
of coal above norms and take remedial measures to ensure the
consumption within the norms;
•
devise more strengthened financial management system for timely
submission and monitoring/realisation of various dues including
claims lodged with coal companies and other parties; and
•
implement the energy audit system expeditiously to reduce
incidence of heat losses and excess consumption of fuel.
46
Ajmer Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited
2.2
IT Audit on Computerisation of revenue billing system by
Ajmer Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited
Executive summary
Ajmer Vidyut Vitran Nigam
Limited (Company) outsourced
(May 2005) the work of design,
development and maintenance of
billing software, data processing of
billing data, printing of bills and
preparation
of
various
management reports in respect of
various circles to two service
providers viz; Business Information
and Processing Services (BIPS)
and
Aditi
Computers.
An
Information Technology Audit on
billing system of the Company was
attempted to ascertain that the
Company, before awarding the
work of its core activity of revenue
realisation,
has
adequately
addressed the associated risks of
outsourcing. Further, the audit was
also conducted to examine, analyse
and to assess adequacy and
effectiveness of billing process and
revenue realisation.
Computerisation of revenue billing
of the Company was assessed
against the Tariff for supply of
electricity-2004, and Terms and
Conditions of Supply (TCOS) 2004,
Rules,
notifications,
directions issued by the Rajasthan
Electricity Regulatory Commission
(Commission) and orders and
circulars issued by the Company.
The data available with the
Company was analysed with the
help of Computer Assisted Audit
Techniques.
Though the system developed by
both the service providers was
adequate as regards to processing
of billing data and generation of
electricity bills yet there were many
shortcomings leading to incorrect
billing as well as not achieving full
potential of IT applications. In a
broader way, observations of audit
have
been
categorised
as
deficiencies of general controls,
system
design
deficiencies,
deficient mapping of business
rules, application controls such as
deficient input controls and
validation checks etc. Besides,
some contractual deficiencies, nonreconciliation of data available in
the
system
with
financial
statements of the Company were
also noticed. Need to establish an
effective
internal
control
mechanism as regards to IT
applications
was
also
felt.
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
Introduction
2.2.1 Ajmer Vidyut Vitran Nigam Limited (Company) was incorporated on
20 July 2000 after unbundling of erstwhile Rajasthan State Electricity Board
(RSEB). The activity of the Company is spread over nine∗ circles. The
Company is distributing electricity to different categories of consumers and
collecting revenue from them for the electricity supplied as per tariff orders
issued by the Rajasthan Electricity Regulatory Commission (Commission).
The Company outsourced (May 2005) the work of generation of electricity
bills of all High Tension (HT) consumers and seven** circles in respect of Low
Tension (LT) consumers to Business Information Processing Services (BIPS).
The work of remaining two circles i.e. Sikar and Jhunjhunu was outsourced to
Aditi Computers for LT consumers. Aditi Computers developed the software
using Oracle 9i as RDBMS and UNIX & LINUX as operating system while
BIPS developed and maintained the data of the HT consumers in Visual Basic
and data of the LT consumers in FOXPRO.
As on 31 March 2008, the Company had 21,61,861 consumers comprising of
domestic, non-domestic, agricultural and industrial consumers. During
2007-08, the total revenue realised by the Company from all categories of the
consumers was Rs. 2,569.37 crore as given in the Annexure-9.
Scope and methodology of audit
2.2.2 The entire billing system pertaining to HT and LT consumers of the
Company was reviewed by the Audit during the period from February to
August 2009. The data as maintained by the billing agencies i.e. by BIPS and
Aditi Computers for the period 2007-08 in respect of all HT consumers and
data relating to LT consumers of two circles# was analysed using Interactive
Data Extraction and Analysis (IDEA), a Computer Assisted Audit Technique
(CAAT) . However, the payment details of LT consumers of Jhunjhunu circle
could not be reviewed as the same were not made available to audit.
Audit methodologies comprising issue of questionnaire and Management’s
response/clarification there upon, scrutiny and verification of manual records,
collection of data and analysis thereof with the help of CAAT, issue of
preliminary audit observations to the management for response with a view to
firming up the audit conclusion, discussion and interaction with the officers of
the Company and billing agencies were adopted. The Government replied
(August 2009) to the audit observation relating to HT billing system and the
response in respect of LT billing was yet to be received (September 2009).
∗
**
#
Ajmer, Bhilwara, Nagaur, Udaipur, Rajsamand, Chittorgarh, Banswara, Jhunjhunu
and Sikar.
Ajmer, Bhilwara, Nagaur, Udaipur, Rajsamand, Chittorgarh and Banswara
Ajmer Circle (billing agency - BIPS) and Jhunjhunu Circle (billing agency- Aditi
Computers)
48
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
Audit objectives
2.2.3 Information Technology (IT) audit of computerisation of revenue
billing of the Company was carried out to evaluate the adequacy and
effectiveness of IT policy of the Company, mapping of business rules,
completeness and correctness of the data and achievement of overall
objectives of the Company.
Audit criteria
2.2.4 IT audit of computerisation of revenue billing of the Company was
assessed against the following parameters:
•
Tariff for supply of electricity-2004, Terms and Conditions of Supply
(TCOS)-2004, Rules, notifications and directions issued by the
Commission;
•
Orders and circulars issued by Commercial wing of the Company; and
•
Best practices pertaining to IT Systems.
Audit findings
Audit findings based on review of the IT System are as under:
Organizational set up
2.2.5 The Chief Engineer (Commercial) of the Company had the overall
responsibility for monitoring the Billing system, while Superintending
Engineers (SEs) of the Circle offices were responsible for their respective
circles. It was, however, noticed that the Company did not have separate
mechanism for co-ordinating and monitoring IT Applications as well as for
liaisoning with the billing agencies which led to various deficiencies as
detailed below.
General Controls
IT policy
2.2.6 A formulated and documented IT policy is essential to assess the time
frame, key performance indicators and cost benefit analysis for developing
and integration of various systems. The Company, however, is yet to
formulate a formal IT policy. Further, the Company did not constitute a
planning/steering committee with clear roles and responsibilities to monitor
each functional area in a systematic manner.
49
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
The Government stated (August 2009) that the newly posted SE (IT) has been
asked to formulate IT policy and to monitor each functional area in a
systematic manner.
Business continuity and disaster recovery plan
2.2.7 The billing system is a critical system as it has a direct impact on the
revenue realisation of the Company. If there is any untoward incident or
disaster and the consumer’s bills are not generated in time or done incorrectly,
earnings of the Company may be substantially affected and also can cause lot
of inconvenience to the consumers. It is, therefore, essential for the entity to
have a documented disaster recovery and business continuity plan to be
implemented such that information processing capability can be resumed at
the earliest in case of any disaster. It was observed that
•
There was no designated mechanism in the Company for the business
continuity and disaster recovery and there was no documented business
continuity plan either.
•
There was no offsite storage of backups.
•
Retrieval of data from backup had not been tested.
•
The backup file of HT consumer database for the year 2006-07 could
not be made available to Audit by the Company.
The Government stated (August 2009) that the newly posted SE (IT) will
formulate the business continuity and disaster recovery plan also. It further
stated that the back up of data of previous years would be obtained.
System Design Deficiencies
Capture of Permanent Account Numbers (PAN)
2.2.8 The Company was required to deduct the tax at source (TDS) on
interest paid exceeding certain amount on security deposit of a consumer and
PAN of HT consumers were required to be mentioned while filing TDS return
with the Income Tax Department. It was noticed that the system did not have
provision for entering PAN of consumer and TDS certificates were issued
manually.
The Government assured (August 2009) to take corrective action from the
billing month of September 2009 onwards.
Power factor incentive/surcharge
2.2.9 As per provisions of tariff-2004, an incentive/surcharge is to be
given/charged for improvement/fall in power factor as the case may be.
Instead of ascertaining the power factor separately in case of a consumer
50
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
having an HT connection and using the power for domestic, non-domestic or
for mixed load category, the power factor at the main HT Meter was
considered and incentive was allowed even when the power factor of these
consumers in domestic, non-domestic or mixed load connection was found to
be less than 0.95 (95 per cent). Further, in case the individual power factor
falls below 0.90, a surcharge at one per cent fall in power factor below 0.90
was also not charged. The excess incentive allowed or short levy of surcharge
has been tabulated below:
(Rs. in lakh)
Category
Domestic
No. of cases
Excess
Incentive
No. of cases
Short levy of
Surcharge
12-18
15.71
2-6
3.65
Non-domestic
4-5
2.57
1
0.87
Mix load
5-7
2.26
1
2.76
Total
20.54
7.28
Thus, the Company allowed irregular incentive amounting to Rs. 20.54 lakh
and also did not levy surcharge of Rs. 7.28 lakh.
The Government stated (August 2009) that cases pointed out would be
reviewed.
Adjustment of excess/short billing
2.2.10 As per the agreements with billing agency, the adjustment of
excess/short billing of earlier month through debits/credits was to be
accounted for both in terms of units of energy as well as in amounts. Scrutiny
of LT database of Jhunjhunu circle, however, revealed that the Aditi
Computers had the provision to indicate the adjustment of debits/credits in
respect of amounts alone. Due to absence of provision in terms of units of
energy, the figures of energy sold shown in the MIS and financial statements
of the Company were incorrect to that extent.
Mapping of business rules
Compliance of Commissions’ directions
2.2.11 The Commission issued (May 2004) instructions to calculate the power
factor separately for the broken periods where the contract demand/connected
load of a HT consumer was changed during the month.
Scrutiny of data for the month of April and May 2007, revealed that due to
non-mapping the Commission’s instruction, separate power factor was not
calculated in case of 12 consumers* though their contract demand changed
*
ID number 170, 216, 243, 271,358, 404, 444, 1426, 1437, 1453, 1501 and 1535.
51
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
during the month. Consequently, the power factor incentive/surcharge was
allowed/levied for the complete month. In absence of the dates on which the
contracts demand/connected load was changed, impact of power factor
incentive/surcharge could not be ascertained.
The Government stated (August 2009) that the power factor was calculated on
the basis of provisions of TCOS. However, it is reiterated that Commission’s
instruction in this regard need to be followed by the Company.
Voltage Rebate
2.2.12 As per the tariff, a voltage rebate at the rate of 0.75 or 1 per cent (as
amended from 1 October 2007) was to be allowed to HT consumers on the
billed amount for the month if the supply is at 33 KV. The Company withdrew
(August 2007) this rebate where the supply was given to such consumers
whose contract demand was less than 1500 KVA. Audit noticed that these
changes were not mapped in the system. As a result, the system allowed
voltage rebate of Rs. 18.77 lakh during the period from August 2007 to March
2008 to such consumers also whose contract demand was less than 1500
KVA.
The Government stated (August 2009) that such rebate was withdrawn for
new consumers only. However, the fact remained that this rebate was
withdrawn for existing consumers also.
Computation of fixed charges
2.2.13 Tariff -2004 provides for collection of ‘Fixed Charges’ in respect of
domestic services (LT) on the basis of average monthly consumption of
previous financial year at the rate of Rs. 80 per month upto 50 units and
Rs. 105 per month above 50 units. However, scrutiny of data revealed that due
to non mapping of such rules in the system, the average consumption and
fixed charges were manually fed and the fixed charges in respect of 2,708 and
1,808 consumers of Ajmer and Jhunjhunu circle respectively were charged
more than the prescribed tariff.
Rebate for LT consumers
2.2.14 (a)
Clause 30(2) of TCOS-2004 stipulates that in case a
stopped/defective meter is not replaced within a period of two months of its
detection, a rebate of five per cent on the total bill of the LT consumer shall be
allowed from third monthly bill in case of monthly/fortnightly billing and
second bill in case of bi-monthly billing after such detection till the meter is
replaced.
Scrutiny of billing data of Jhunjhunu circle revealed that 603 LT consumers
were billed on average basis during 2007-08 indicating that the meters were
defective during the period. The admissible rebate of Rs. 3.88 lakh at the rate
of five per cent was, however, not allowed to these consumers.
52
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
2.2.14 (b)
Tariff -2004 provides for a rebate of 5 paisa per unit in the
“Energy Charges” for usage of “Solar Water Heating System”. Scrutiny of
data, however, revealed that this rule was not mapped in the system and as a
result, the rebate was not given to 399 consumers using “Solar Water Heating
System”.
Short recovery of fixed voltage charges
2.2.15 As per Tariff -2004, fixed charges for HT consumers at the rate of
Rs. 90 per KVA per month of billing demand i.e. the maximum demand
actually recorded in KVA during the month or 75 per cent of contract demand,
whichever was higher, were to be recovered.
Audit, however, noticed that in the absence of mapping of such rules in the
system, wherever the reading of energy consumption was recorded twice in a
month due to change in meter/Current Transformer Potential Transformer
(CTPT) or change in contract demand, the fixed charges were levied on
average demand. Thus, the fixed charges worked out by the system were short
recovered by Rs. 9.82 lakh in 9 to 24 cases during 2007-08.
Application controls
Input controls and Validation checks
2.2.16 To ensure correctness, completeness and reliability of the database, it
is necessary to ensure appropriate input control and data validation during the
data entry. This would help in reduction in duplication of efforts and
redundancy. The following deficiencies were noticed in audit in this regard.
Input Controls
Completeness of database
2.2.17 The system did not have adequate input controls to ensure complete
data capture. Analysis of HT/LT database revealed that the database was
incomplete as vital details, were left blank as detailed below:
HT billing system
•
date of connection (168 cases)/disconnection (96 cases), date of
agreement (736 cases), sanctioned load (1,361 cases), connected load
(1,380 cases), reference to security deposit (134 cases), date on which
the security amount deposited (355 cases), industrial code (267 cases)
and area code (246 cases) were found blank.
53
Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
LT billing system
•
meter number (551 cases), sanctioned load (170 cases)/connected load
(172 cases), bill number (15,113 cases), username involved in
generation of bill (15,113 cases), periodicity of outstanding dues
(7,769 cases) were not indicated.
Status of defective meters
2.2.18 As per clause 27 of TCOS in case of non-functioning of meter, the bills
of energy consumption are to be prepared on average basis. Analysis of data of
HT consumers revealed that in many cases though the consumption of a
consumer in different months continuously remained same yet the system did
not indicate any alert about non-functioning of the meters as the field
indicating status of meter was found blank. It was further noticed that in such
cases the assessment was made manually instead of through system.
The Government stated (August 2009) that instructions have now been issued
to the billing agencies to indicate the status of the meters.
Observance of provisions of TCOS
2.2.19 Clause 27 of the TCOS provided that if the meter installed at the LT
consumer’s premises is stopped/lost/stolen/burnt, the consumption of
electricity for this period shall be assessed on the basis of consumption of the
corresponding period of the previous year or the average monthly
consumption of the previous six months, whichever is higher. Audit, however,
noticed that adequate input controls were not in-built in the system. As a result
of it, the following discrepancies were noticed:
•
in Jhunjhunu circle, the consumption details for the corresponding
period of the previous year had been shown as ‘nil’ in respect of
11,351 consumers in April 2007;
•
database depicted negative consumption of previous corresponding
period in respect of 249 consumers;
•
in Ajmer and Jhunjhunu circle, average monthly consumption of the
previous six months in the database was also shown as ‘nil’ in 3,538
and 11,952 cases respectively.
As a result, the data could not be utilised for billing during the period of nonfunctioning of the meter and the same were assessed manually.
Duplicate meter numbers
2.2.20 Each energy meter installed at the premises of the consumers has a
unique serial number. The system, however, accepted the same meter numbers
for different consumers. Data analysis revealed 58 and 251 duplicate serial
numbers of energy meters in case of HT and LT consumers respectively.
The Government assured (August 2009) to take corrective action.
54
Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
Rebate for domestic connections in rural areas
2.2.21 Tariff -2004 provides for a rebate of 10 per cent of energy charges for
domestic connections (LT) in rural areas only. This rebate was, however, not
to be allowed in such villages where round the clock supply of electricity was
being provided. Such villages were identified in the system with the tariff code
‘1500’. As per the management information system (MIS) of the Company,
out of total 1,025 villages under Ajmer circle, 949 villages have been
electrified upto March 2008 and round the clock supply of electricity was
provided in these villages.
Scrutiny of database, however, revealed that
•
status of 444 such villages have not been updated in the system and
therefore the rebate was allowed to domestic connections which were
not eligible for this rebate,
•
in the absence of provision in the system, the rebate of 10 per cent was
directly reduced from the tariff/energy charges instead of showing it
separately,
•
in the absence of necessary validation checks, the system indicated
tariff code ‘1500’ in case of urban connections also.
Security Deposit from HT consumers
2.2.22 As per TCOS provisions, the Company assessed the requirement of
security deposit from a consumer at the beginning of each financial year on
the basis of actual average consumption for the preceding twelve months to
cover the risk towards the Company’s dues. In case the security deposit given
by a consumer is found insufficient or in excess, the difference so worked out
shall be adjusted accordingly. Audit noticed that security deposit amount
shown in the system was not reconciled with the records compiled by the
Commercial Section and there was a difference of Rs. 3.20 crore as on March
2008. The differences were due to non-communicating the data relating to
recovery or refund of security deposit to service provider on regular and
timely basis for data entry. The differences in amounts of security deposit of
individual consumers noticed during test check are given in Annexure-10.
The Government assured (August 2009) to take corrective action to update the
security deposit records.
Validation checks
Disparity between agreement date and connection date
2.2.23 An agreement is required to be executed by the consumer before
release of HT connection. Audit noticed that the system did not have a check
to validate the date of agreement with reference to date of release of
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Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
connection. As a result, in 33 cases the database displayed agreement date
subsequent to the date of release of connection.
The Government stated (August 2009) that necessary instructions will be
issued to the service providers.
Multiplication factor
2.2.24 For computation of consumption, the units recorded in the KWH
meters are being multiplied by the Multiplication Factor (MF) having
numerator and denominator as indicated on the Current Transformer Potential
Transformer (CTPT) installed at the consumers’ premises. Audit, however,
noticed that in case of HT consumers, the system did not validate the
denominator while calculating the consumption as in some cases though the
MF denominator indicated zero value yet it calculated the consumption and
generated the bills indicating manual intervention. Thus, the system was
deficient to this extent. Besides above, the system also did not have the
provision to indicate the CTPT numbers installed at the consumers’ premises,
in absence of which the system was not able to validate the change in MF in
case the CTPT installed at consumers’ premises was replaced.
The Government assured (August 2009) to take corrective action.
Discrepancies in serial numbers and date of generation of bills
2.2.25 The system was deficient and also lacked validation checks. Audit
while analysing HT consumers’ data, noticed that:
•
the serial numbers of electricity bills were not being given by default
and therefore the bills generated on subsequent dates have the serial
numbers prior to bills which had already been generated on an earlier
date;
•
bill issue date and the bill generation date were not validated in the
system. Instances were noticed wherein the bill generation date i.e. the
date of printing of the bill was subsequent to the date of bill issue.
Such discrepancies in the system may lead to consumer grievances and
legal disputes.
The Government assured (August 2009) to issue necessary directions to the
service providers.
Manual intervention in generation and issue of bills
2.2.26 As per the work order, BIPS was required to generate bills on the very
same date on which the inputs were provided to them. In case of HT
consumer, the reading of the electricity consumed was being recorded on first
date of the month and the bills were to be realised within 12 days of issue.
Audit, however, noticed the following discrepancies:
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Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
•
even after allowing six days grace period for generation and
distribution of bills, most of bills were realised from twentieth to last
day of the month resulting in delay of 2 to 12 days;
•
delay in generation and issue of bills for 2 to 12 days consequently
delayed the realization of revenue to the tune of Rs. 351.66 crore*
during 2007-08 affecting already strained financial position of the
Company;
•
manual intervention in checking of all the bills defeated the very
purpose of using IT facilities.
Despite improvements in IT facilities and infrastructure and also availability
of trivector meters capable of taking readings directly from meters through
hand held devices and transferring input data directly to the service provider,
the Company did not initiate action to reduce the revenue realisation cycle.
The delay in generation and distribution of bills could not be assessed by
Audit in absence of records of time taken in the each activity of processing of
bills.
Compliance of provisions of contract
Terms and conditions of the work order
2.2.27 The service providers were required to submit deliverables such as:
•
flow chart of programme and source code before commencement of
work;
•
getting the HT billing data insured for safety of data;
•
enabling the billing software web/net enabled for viewing of consumer
wise billing status/outstanding/securities and other consumer related
information;
•
providing requisite operational and other training to the personnel
nominated by the Company.
It was noticed that both the service providers failed to comply with the
requisite provisions of the contractual agreement as mentioned above.
The Government replied (August 2009) that the matter is being taken up with
the service providers.
*
Revenue after 18th day of the respective months.
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Audit Report (Commercial) for the year ended 31 March 2009
Utilisation of system
2.2.28 The system was also designed to provide details of outstanding against
various consumers, adjustment of security deposits in case of Permanent
Disconnected Consumers (PDCs) and to take effective measure on MIS being
generated through it.
Scrutiny of database of 1,385 HT consumers revealed that Rs. 15.90 crore was
outstanding against 197 PDCs as on March 2008, comprising of Board Dues
(BD) of Rs. 13.56 crore, Electricity Duty (ED) of Rs. 0.41 crore and Late
Payment Surcharge (LPS) of Rs. 1.93 crore. Among these, Rs.14.55 crore
(154 consumers) were outstanding for more than three years.
Audit further noticed that the outstanding dues of Rs. 48.48 lakh consisting of
BD (Rs. 44.20 lakh), ED (Rs. 3.22 lakh) and LPS (Rs. 1.06 lakh) were not
shown adjusted from the available security deposit (Rs. 80.08 lakh) of 27
PDCs disconnected during the period between July 2004 and March 2007. No
periodical reconciliation of regular dues between the figures shown in the
database of system and accounting records was done to ascertain the
effectiveness of system and reliability of information.
The Government stated (August 2009) that action has been initiated to adjust
the dues of the consumers in order of priority and steps are being taken to
recover the dues from PDCs under relevant Act.
Internal Control
2.2.29 The activity of billing system comprising of processing and generation
of bills for HT/LT consumers was very important as the timely assessment,
billing and realization of revenue is critical for survival for the Company and
can be considered as backbone system of the Company. This mission critical
activity has been outsourced. The Company was expected to exercise prudent
controls over the outsourcing activity as well as on outsourced agency to
which this activity was assigned. It was noticed that:
•
the Company has never checked the activities of the billing system,
infrastructure of service provider, adequacy and security of
infrastructure;
•
the competency of staff deployed for data entry by billing agencies was
never verified by the Company. This may lead to a risk of
copying/manipulation/deleting the critical data of the Company;
•
monitoring of access controls employed by the billing agencies has
never been done to protect the database and to avoid any miscreant
activity;
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Chapter II Performance Audit relating to Government Companies
•
the Company did not have any system to review the correctness of
mapping of tariff/business rules in the system and to ensure the
reliability of outsourced billing system.
Thus, the internal control in respect of IT application was non-existent. The
Company also could not address the associated risks of outsourced billing
system.
Conclusion
The Company does not have an IT policy or a business continuity plan.
The design deficiencies and inadequate input controls resulted in
allowance of inadmissible incentives. The outputs generated by the system
were not reconciled with financial statements of the Company. The
Company could not improve the reliability of system by including
outsourced billing system under the scope of internal control/audit to
ensure its reliability and effectiveness. Despite strained fund position, the
Company could not reduce duplication of efforts and reduce the cycle of
revenue collection period. Thus, the Company could not leverage the use
of technology to its maximum potential. The Company assured to take
effective steps in this direction to improve the system.
Recommendations
The Company should:
•
formulate and implement a clear and comprehensive IT policy and
periodically review it in view of changing scenario;
•
conduct periodical reconciliation of system data and financial
statements;
•
build in input controls and validation checks into the system to
prevent duplicate entries and to ensure complete and correct data
entries; and
•
cover the outsourced IT application under the scope of internal
control/audit to enhance the reliability and effectiveness of billing
system.
59
Fly UP